The presentation of the adopted cat to the rest of the cats in the house must be done step by step, with the help of a carrier and the owner's arms
- Author: By EVA SAN MARTÍN
- Publication date: October 10, 2013
The the arrival of a new cat to a house where other cats already live may seem a problem at first, although with some advice the roughness will disappear and the hairy ones can become great friends. This article includes six keys so that the adopted cat is accepted by the rest of the felines: go through the vet, offer an isolated room to the newcomer, presentations with transport and prizes, meetings in the arms of the owner and stop possible Fights between cats that might arise at the beginning.
New cat at home: how to introduce the rest of felines?
The arrival of a new cat home needs some adaptation time for the rest of the cats to find their place
Billy It is a three month old tabby cat. This cute little feline has just been adopted by a family in whose house other adult cats already live together. How to ensure that the coexistence between them is positive and even that they become good hairy friends?
"The arrival of a new cat in a house where there are already other adult felines usually causes some initial problems, since the animals will need to relocate the newcomer"warns veterinarian Patricia González.
However, if the adaptation is done in the right way, it is very strange that there are problems or that the fights between the cats are prolonged. "The key is to make the presentations in a very progressive way," adds this feline expert. They are explained below. six steps to get it:
1. The new cat needs to visit the vet
The first step to introduce a new cat at home is to go through the veterinarian. The feline doctor needs to examine the hairy newcomer, assess their health status and analyze if they have internal or external parasites (fleas) that need treatment. In this way, in addition, prevents infection from passing to felines that already live at home, since this type of parasites usually spreads among four-legged friends quickly.
This first visit to the vet will also serve to perform the leukemia tests as well as the feline immunodeficiency, the so-called AIDS of cats These analyzes are essential, since both diseases can be transmitted to the rest of the house cats. "In addition, although leukemia is vaccinated, there is no injection against the cat immunodeficiency virus," warns the veterinarian.
Once the health status of the adopted cat has been verified, the feline presentations can be started, step by step.
2. Introduce a new cat at home, a separate room
Second step to succeed with the arrival of the new cat: the cat will need a room for him only during the first days at home. The new hairy tenant can stay in a secluded room, with a bed for cats, toys, water, sandbox for the cat to make his needs.
This separation will allow cats to smell and hear without undergoing the stress that would involve direct contact. "You have to make sure that the room is isolated from the rest of the cats and that the door remains locked. This quiet stay will help the newcomer feel safe and to adapt to your new home before, "recommends the 4 Paws protective association (four legs).
A good idea is to offer the adopted cat toys that the rest of the furry inhabitants of the house have already used. And vice versa: once the new tenant has used them, these accessories can be taken out from the rest of the cats so that they can also become familiar, little by little, with the smell of their new furry friend.
3. Make the new cat trust
These first days will also serve the owner to better understand the personality of the adopted cat, and to strengthen emotional ties with the newcomer. The caresses, the toys, the scraper for the cat, the soft words as well as the games with the cat will be essential for the newcomer to take the confidence he needs at home.
"Newly arrived cats in a new home are usually not in the mood to play, so the adaptation should be as quiet as possible, and the environment very quiet and noise-free," says the Humane Society association, dedicated to finding a house to homeless dogs and cats that need it.
Another tip: cat puppies and fearful adult felines they tend to look for the most hidden corner of the room, a refuge where to hide. This space can be the back of the sofa, a recess behind the bookshelf or any similar recess.
It is advisable to invite the cat to occupy the center of the room and prevent it from hiding. Once you feel safe, this will make you gain confidence and lose your fear. But, How to make a scared cat not try to hide?
Nail towels or blankets may be worth to cover the bottom of the sofa and avoid that this property provides you with the hiding place you are looking for. The cat's bed (better on high) can be placed in the middle of the room: filling it with toys and hanging a cell phone to hit and run around will also be a support for the shy newcomer to gain self-confidence.
Of course, the caresses and cares for the rest of the cats in the house should also be increased.
4. Feline presentations in transport, step by step
Cat fights that are not yet known should be avoided with the help of the carrier and the owner's arms during the presentations
The presentations between different cats that are not yet known cannot be forced. "The meetings must take place step by step," explains González. Ideally, use the carrier for these first approaches.
How? The new cat must be placed in a central place in a main room and frequented by the house cats. "The other cats will come to smell him, to recognize him, little by little, each at his own pace", explains the veterinarian.
A trick that works to encourage these first meetings is to place some treats or cans of cat food at a reduced distance from the carrier. These groceries will help the felines to approach the cat. And to see their arrival as something positive.
The distance of the prizes to the carrier can be reduced throughout the days, so that the contact between the different felines is getting closer. "The exchange of smells between felines will favor acceptance and reduce stress, something that can also be achieved with the brushed cats with the same accessory", adds 4 Paws.
These first encounters with carrier must be the only contact during the first four or five days of the cat at home. Meetings protected in this way can be held, for example, for half an hour, several times throughout the day.
5. Feline encounters with the cat in arms
After these first four or five days of contacts with the protection of the carrier and prizes, the cats are already prepared to establish a somewhat greater approach. However, in this new stage the felines will also need our help. How to do it?
The correct is take the new cat in our arms and sit on a comfortable sofa or armchair, so that the rest of the hairy tenants can approach and touch him. However, we must not release the new cat: we must be mediators of these approaches.
Cats can smell, brush their bodies and touch with the protection of our arms. The kind words, pronounced in a soft and affectionate tone will be grateful for all the hairy tenants, and will help release tensions. If we also accompany them with caresses and edible prizes, the stress will be significantly reduced.
This presentation phase lasts another four or five days. Once the meeting is over in the owner's arms, the new tenant must return to his room. "All these meetings controlled by us will serve the cats to gradually relocate the new feline in the family, and find their space," says Gonzalez.
Cats tend to organize and distribute both space and schedules. Therefore, these monitored meetings will help the house cats to find, little by little, the space that corresponds to the new hairy house tenant.
The arrival of a new cat home can be a reason for conflicts with the other feline family members, but they will disappear if we make the contact between them adequate.
6. Encounters between guarded cats
Ten days after arriving home, cats are already prepared to meet without the physical mediation of the carrier or the total protection of the owner's arms. Arrives on longed for the felines to inspect, smell, touch and, of course, to play in freedom.
These meetings, however, must also be supervised by us. Nor should we leave them together if we leave home until we are sure that the conflicts have ceased.
Though It is normal for a cat to bufe a little or something more grumpy that others, fights between cats are not productive and should be avoided: they will only serve to harm themselves and increase aggression among felines. The scuffles between felines, if they occur, must be stopped suddenly: separate the cats and try again later. These types of fights, however, do not always occur, and when they do occur, they reduce over time.
However, if the adaptation is done in the right way, it is very strange that there are problems or that the fray between the hairy tenants is prolonged. With our help, the snorts will give way - little by little - to the games and, with them, the normal thing is that the friendship between house cats.
Happy welcome to the feline family, cat friend!
Cats and cats friends who fight
Two friendly cats can fight, or try to do it, occasionally during the first months of living together. "These fights tend to be somewhat more frequent when it comes to two cats", explains veterinarian Patricia González.
The fights between felines must be stopped: cats must be convinced that they should be friends and that, in addition, this friendship will bring more benefits than harm. In most cases, fights between cats that live in the same house disappear, so that only 10% of the feline roommates keep them over the months sporadically, according to the statistics of possession of domestic animals prepared by the American Association of Veterinarians.
Patience, duplicate prizes, multiplied pampering, games shared and animated by the owner and caresses to two, three or four bands (depending on the cats at home) will be an essential help for make adopted cats have the home they deserve. And some furry friends to share it with.
Cat fights: usual problem
Cats so friends, and the next time. great enemies Fights between felines that live in the same house are a common dilemma that also worries those who share their lives with one or more of the nearly four million mininos that live in Spain, according to the Federation of Food Manufacturers for Pets.
"Fights among domestic cats are the most frequent feline behavior problem in veterinary and ethologist consultations, only after the misuse of the cat's litter tray," says Terry M. Curtis, animal behavior expert at the University of Florida (USA), who has studied these feline disputes in depth.
Fights between cats worry one in four people living with more than one feline
Half of the domestic cats share housing with other cats, states the statistics on the possession of domestic animals prepared by the American Association of Veterinarians. Among them, the houses with two cats are the majority: five out of ten. Two out of ten households share their lives with three mininos, and the rest - three out of ten - with four or more cat inhabitants.
But, How frequent are the quarrels among these felines? "One in four owners says their cats fight, at least occasionally," says researcher Emily Levine, author of the study 'Aggressions between domestic cats after the arrival of a new cat', published in the scientific journal Applied Animal Behavior. These data imply that of the four million cats that live in Spain, about 500,000 may be fighting with their furry housemates with some regularity.
Why do cats fight?
Fights between felines that live in the same house can be occasional, but also become a worrying behavior that ends up with more or less serious injuries to those involved. The brawls are especially common during their first meetings. "Half of the cats that are going to live in the same house fight, scratch or bite during their first encounter", ditch Levine.
Aggressions between cats occur in the middle of the first encounters
The arrival of a new cat can awaken the territorial behavior of the feline that arrived before the house. "The aggressions are usually more common among male cats, a behavior that is not surprising when the natural feline tendency to defend their space and resources is known," adds the researcher.
Catfights, however, are not always motivated by resource shortage: food, home space or few sandboxes. Feline quarrels can also be fueled by disputes over female attention or for psychological reasons less easy to recognize, such as cat stress.
Whether for one reason or another, Fights between felines are not healthy, as they can end serious injuries and stimulate counterproductive feelings such as fear or anxiety among hairy fighters.
What to do when two cats fight? 10 tricks
Though most fights between cats that share a house end up sending before the first month of coexistence, one in ten couples maintains their troubles. But these aggressions can not only be stopped, but it should be done: felines who quarrel often miss a golden opportunity to experience friendship with their cat roommate. But, How to avoid these fights? Below are offered ten tips of experts.
1. "Fights between cats should be stopped as soon as possible, in order to prevent them from becoming a habit, "explains a study by Cornell University (USA). Two felines that aggregate, in addition, they need to be separated, because they are territorial animals that will not know how to fix their differences by themselves. "In addition, the more often cats fight, the worse the disputes and their possible consequences will become," concludes an extensive work on feline aggression by the University of Illinois (USA).
2. How to stop a fight between cats at home? There are several ways to achieve this: emit a loud sound (a whistle) that catches your attention, throw a stream of water on the feline fights or throw something soft in order to mislead them. Separating them with your hands does not usually work and, in addition, you run the risk of getting hurt from the attempt.
3. Punishments - much less physical reprisals - are not worth the cat, because they only increase the anxiety of the animal.
4. Edible cat prizes are a good way to reinforce non-aggressive behaviors among felines. When a new hairy inhabitant comes home, it is worth doubling the attention. In this way cats can understand that living near another feline adds, never subtracts.
5. Prevent future fights between cats. Penitentiary felines must remain separated after the dispute. The distance must be maintained while the problem is resolved or, at least, when the risk of a new brawl is glimpsed. In addition, these fights rarely fix themselves: cats need the help of their two-legged friend. Once distanced, and already calm, it is convenient to repeat the presentations slowly.
6. Detecting the origin of clashes between felines is key to stop them. Then, we must act: place more sandboxes and clean them more frequently, duplicate the affections and games with two cats, etc.
7. The presentation of the two cats is a key moment to avoid future fights between them at home. "The first contact should be gradual, especially if they are reluctant," explains veterinarian Patricia González.
8. Fights between cats living in the same home may start suddenly. "In this case the right thing is to go to the vet because a disease or pain can be the cause of the aggressiveness," concludes an extensive work on feline aggressiveness conducted by the University of Illinois.
9. Cat sterilization helps curb its aggressiveness and, consequently, fights between hairy fighters.
10. Some medications or veterinary treatments can stop these behaviors, but they will only be efficient if they are accompanied by modifications at home (more sandboxes, more play space, more affections). The guideline is to consult the feline doctor or educator.
Two cats at home, how to improve living together?
Usually, if two or even three cats are raised together they usually have no problems in living together, and they get to see themselves as family members. However, when he is only one who lives at home, and has become the king of the home, he can see his territory threatened by the arrival of another. How to avoid this?
Although this aspect is not decisive, If the cat you have is a male, you may accept a female best. Cats are territorial and the presence of another male could make him feel threatened.
Needless to say, if you don't want ‘puppies’, you should castrate either of them.
And speaking of castration, this is another aspect to consider, because it is much better than if one is castrated, the other is also. The castrated person could feel a kind of envy towards the one who is not, that will result in a bad coexistence and even in fights.
The uncastrated would see the other as a threat and somehow feel inferior to him. To avoid these misunderstandings castrate both, regardless of whether they are of different sexes.
Do not believe that because they are cats they can use the same bed, sleep in the same place and use the same sandbox. This may be something that happens over time, but how would you feel if someone comes to your house to share all your belongings without asking permission? Yes, this is how your cat will feel, the one who has been with you the longest.
So, double everything and give everyone their place, their food, their water and everything they need so that neither can feel threatened by the other.
If you have already heard that two cats can get along badly and you are constantly going around the subject, constantly watching both of them, and jumping nervously in any situation, you will only aggravate the situation, because you will make the animals nervous and you will not achieve anything positive .
Give them some time, that they know each other, smell each other, look at each other and study each other. Normally, cats do not usually attack the first exchange. It is possible that they buff a little at first, but you calm down, at least as long as you don't see that the situation is going further.
Do the same to both of you
We talk about both material things and emotional aspects. If you pamper one, do it with the other, if you buy a toy from one, take one to the other, etc.
Your attitude towards both will determine how they look at each other. If they feel loved in the same way over time, the quarrels may disappear.
You know that with pets you have to be patient, but this together with love can achieve great things, even if two cats live together in harmony.
Practical advice for dogs and cats
While the dog enjoys his daily walkOn the contrary, the cat looks more for his own space. On the other hand, as happens to people, cats and dogs they also need their own adaptation process to integrate into the new common living routine. Therefore, be patient.
Cats and dogs may also feel jealous when a new animal comes to the house or when the owner makes an unequal distribution of love. It is very important that the whole family agree on the decision to have dogs and cats at home since this change is best done as a team.
The advisable thing is that the cat and the dog begin their coexistence in the same house when both are very young. At this stage, they are more receptive towards this fact. It may be necessary to differentiate food and rest spaces for each one. It is convenient to place a security bar between one area and another.
During those times when you are not at home, when you can not be aware of what they do, it is better that everyone is in a different area of the house. During the process of adapting to this common coexistence it is recommended that your dog be on his leash at those times when he is with the cat in the same room. Ask the veterinarian for advice because it will help you answer your questions about this issue.